Which Job Should I Take?

I’m going to start a new job next week. They are going to pay me more than the previous company. They are going to teach me some new skills also. But, I’ve found another offer where they offer over 25% more than the new company and they require skills I already have.

Should I even take part in this process? On the one hand: I don’t want to pass over opportunities, on the other I’ve already signed a contract and I know that the new company expects me to work there for at least one year.


Dear Voytec,

We would like to analyze the situation as if you had not signed a contract and then circle back to your specific reality. Whenever anyone accepts a new position, there are many unknowns. Will the work match the job description? Will the work environment be a pleasant one? Is there room for growth even if promised? Is the company stable or might it end up being a short-term proposition?

Obviously, salary is a big factor in deciding to accept a job. Assuming that you were offered two positions and the only factor that differed was pay, there wouldn’t really be a debate. In your case, the job that you have committed yourself to is a step up in salary from your present job. Had both the two newer jobs presented themselves at the same time, we would have encouraged you to ask a few more questions in addition to the ones above. Do you enjoy the work you do with the skills you have and want to stay in that type of position at your current level? Would the skills you could acquire at the lower paying job give you more opportunity in the future? Is this a time in your life where you can afford to earn less while setting yourself up for more long-term success?

The fact is, however, that you have signed a contract. As Proverbs 22:1 teaches, a good name is worth more than riches. Being trustworthy is one of the main attributes needed for acquiring a good name. In this case, the newest job opportunity (which is, of course, only a possibility) is presenting you with a tantalizing distraction from joyfully starting your contracted job with joy and zeal. Rather than being grateful for a pay raise and an opportunity to learn new skills, you may risk bringing a devastating attitude of resentment to your work.

This danger harks back to the Garden of Eden where every tree except two was available, yet the forbidden had a tempting allure. It exists in many areas of life. For example, once married, some spouses destructively allow their minds to picture what man or woman might have been a better choice.

A final thought on building your reputation are these words by an early 20th century Happy Warrior, Orison Swett Marden:

“If the youth should start out with the fixed determination that every statement he makes shall be the exact truth; that every promise he makes shall be redeemed to the letter; that every appointment shall be kept with the strictest faithfulness and with full regard for other men’s time; if he should hold his reputation as a priceless treasure, feel that the eyes of the world are upon him, that he must not deviate a hair’s breadth from the truth and right; if he should take such a stand at the outset, he would … come to have almost unlimited credit and the confidence of everybody who knows him.”

With this guidance in mind, the answer to your question becomes obvious.

Our advice, Voytec, is to avoid thinking about what “might have been” and to throw yourself into your job commitment with all enthusiasm and with your full energies.

Wishing you success,

Rabbi and Susan Lapin

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